Turning Green, the World’s Loneliest Teen Sex Comedy


Working through a mild case of xenophobia, cynical American-Irish teenager James (Donal Gallery) desperately wants to escape the tiny stereotype of a rural Emerald Isle town (old biddies, cursing priests, green lushness, and greener lushes) where he was dumped on his aunts after his mum died. His only pals are an 11-year-old brother who can’t hold his Guinness and a cantankerous drunk gambler played by go-to Irish actor Colm Meaney; his biggest coming-of-age obstacle is not having enough privacy to jerk off. Writer-directors Michael Aimette and John G. Hofmann seem to have constructed their 1979-set, superficial debut around this last plot point: James’s incessant masturbation. After spending so much time in the bathroom that his aunts are concerned, James gets sent to London to see a gastronomical specialist, and returns with a scheme to sell bootleg porn to every horny fool in town. Turning Green is, if nothing else, the world’s loneliest teen sex comedy—the only nubile girl in town barely appears onscreen, and James’s lone date with her is interrupted by two criminal cock-blockers (Alessandro Nivola as a threatening bookie, and Timothy Hutton, in a startling turn, as his brute enforcer) who implausibly spin the film into a sloppy gangster drama.